Ben&Ben, The Juans, 6cyclemind, and More Relive Musical Moments, Spark Optimism Amid Pandemic Through Songs | Wish Connect (June 1 to June 12)

Jun 20, 2020

The month of June welcomed another sweep of OPM acts from across different genres on Wish 107.5’s Facebook Live series, Wish Connect. 

In this special feature, we’re giving you a Wishclusive look at what our featured guests have been up to during the quarantine.  We also highlight some compelling anecdotes from up-and-coming acts and share insights from those who have become mainstays in the local music scene for years.

Music for advocacy and action

In this age where the masses are becoming more exposed to varying perspectives about political, socio-economic, and public health matters, folk-pop powerhouse Ben&Ben musically espoused the importance of exercising one’s right to speak up. 

In their Wish Connect interview, Ben&Ben talked about one of their recent releases titled “Doors.” The group shared how  this track is special for them because it’s their  way of telling people that “sometimes, it’s okay [to keep your thoughts to yourself], but sometimes you also need to speak up.”

“If you clearly see that something isn’t right anymore, and you feel that you need to speak up, do not underestimate the power of your voice. Because voices, when put out collectively, are like a colony of ants. Individually, one might feel that they’re alone and that it’s impossible to achieve something. But as a group, they can actually lift a thing that weighs more than their mass,” the track’s songwriter Miguel Guico pondered.

Championing insightful discourse especially on societal matters, the 5th WMA Group of the Year also acknowledged the power of music to kindle compassion and promote citizen action.

As a band, we believe very much in using our voice to speak out, but we also believe in people’s capacity to not just speak but do. Our combined efforts can actually be translated into a tangible output. We just help serve in order to bring that collective power of people helping to those who need it,” vocalist Paolo Guico enthused as he recounted the overflowing response they received from their supporters for their “Puhon!” Covid-19 fundraiser.

READ: Bringing People Together Virtually Through Music: Ryan Cayabyab, Ben&Ben, and More Perform for COVID-19 Donations

Shining the spotlight on another vital topic, The Itchyworms made use of their Wish Connect airtime  by fostering mental health awareness through their latest offering, “The Silence.”

“There are two kinds of people — people who are never alone and people who are always alone. So, what we can say, as a PSA, is to check up on your friends. Especially those who are alone in their homes this quarantine,” guitarist Chino Singson reflected on the importance of  of human interaction in times of distress.

READ: The Itchyworms Make Noise For Mental Health Awareness With ‘The Silence’

For artists like Yeng Constantino and The Juans, , whose fresh releases brim with words of faith and optimism, maximizing their influence as entertainment figures in the country, in a way, could allow them to reach out and empathize with those who feel fragile and vulnerable.

“We’d just want to encourage you [to hope for the better], like at how there is a light at the end of a long tunnel, darkness will definitely come to an end. Better mornings are on their way,” The Juans’ lead vocalist and keyboardist Carl Guevarra expressed, as he shared what the message of their song  “Manalangin” is, during their online radio stint. 

During their Wish Connect guestings, self-confessed The Juans fan Psalms David and fellow young musician Ylona Garcia also stressed upon the potency of music and prayer, and how these serve as an antidote to fear, disruption, and doubt in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.

A look back on the live music scene

The way in which music lovers enjoy gigs and concerts these days is widely different from the way they did just a few months ago — watching from the comforts of your couch is entirely different from seeing your music hero perform live in front of a large crowd composed of fellow enthusiasts.

Ben happily reaches out to Pinoy A1 fans as he sings, with his fellow bandmates
dancing in the background.

Taking the perspective of the performers themselves, Marione and Janine Teñoso shared on Wish Connect how they miss singing along and catching up with their fans, before and after shows.  Indie-pop duo Leanne and Naara also expressed how the audience is a big part of their performance. “That’s the heart of the song. Whenever we perform it live, people appreciate it, ‘cause they can sing and can clap along with us.” 

During their Wish Connect exclusive, Imago’s bass player Myrene Academia shared two non-negotiables when  — “one, we play together as a group, and two, to play to the crowd because when you’re playing live, that’s when the energy is different.”

Meanwhile, the lockdown may have put theater shows on hold, but for avid fans,  their appreciation of the performing arts has not faltered — especially now that the number of  plays being streamed online for free continues to grow. During his Wish Connect stint, premier balladeer Gerald Santos spoke to those who are interested in pursuing a career in theater and doled out words of encouragement. , “If you really want a career in theater, just know that this is requires constant learning. You have to hone your talent constantly.” 

Living by the same discipline, then-PMAer and 6cyclemind frontman Tutti Caringal gave Wish Connect listeners a walkthrough of what it’s really like to be musicians. 

“People only see the glitz and glamor of being a performer. They don’t see how hard it is. You’ll wake up at a certain hour in the morning to catch the first flight to the city that you’ll be performing in, you’ll play in the evening and then catch the first flight out again. Being deprived of sleep and going on a 14-hour road trip before reaching the venue, these are just some of the things that we encounter as a band. That’s why we have to discipline ourselves and take things easy for our health.”

<S>andwich was nostalgic as they recounted  treasured memories — the very first time “Butterfly Carnival” was played over the radios, their intimate gigs in SaGuijo, and how pumped-up the crowd would get whenever they performed “Sugod,” “Betamax,” and “Dvdx.” 

The band together with Moonstar88, hosts an annual party to celebrate the birthdays of Raymund Marasigan and Moonstar88’s vocalist Maysh Baay every 22nd of May, but the party was postponed this year due to the pandemic. Moonstar88 treated their fans instead to the online debut of their latest single, “Naantala.” Their latest offering is a wistful ode dedicated to the deferred events and plans caused by the pandemic and was produced by Marasigan and Moonstar88 bassist Buddy Zabala.

Never miss the latest from Wish Connect. Catch the online radio, hosted by DJ Ray Holiday, DJ Faye, DJ Alice, DJ Adam, and DJ Jenie, LIVE on our official Facebook page — Mondays through Fridays at 7 p.m. PHT. Stay tuned via our social media pages for updates.

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